FC hall clocks ‘well past time’ for replacement

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VEEDERSBURG — Board members at Southeast Fountain Schools received a tour of facilities Tuesday ahead of the district’s first day of school, and noticed something was off.

“Are they gonna get all those clocks in sync, because they’re all wrong,” board member Donna Deel asked.

“You can’t. It’s next to impossible,” Superintendent Dan Foster replied. “Some of them are so ancient you can’t fix them; you can’t repair them and they just do not keep time. They do whatever they want.”

The clocks, which hang in nearly every hallway at Fountain Central Jr.-Sr. High School, are believed to be original to the building when construction of the newly consolidated district school was completed in 1965.

But by Thursday night’s public board meeting, new clocks had been quoted and the board approved the purchase.

Furthermore, the new set of clocks will receive live updates from a central transmitter utilizing atomic time so readings are guaranteed to be correct with little-to-no maintenance necessary.

“The transmitter will send information to all the clocks at once, that way if we have a time change or go without power, you take care of one and it’ll take care of the rest,” Foster said. “It was desperately needed. We were waiting on other projects to see how the budget fell, and some of the things we weren’t able to do due to (COVID-19) restrictions.”

Surprisingly, Foster said, a Federal Communications Commission (FCC) license is required for the clock system.

The clocks will be delivered and installed in the coming weeks.

In other business, the board:

• Reviewed the budget for the 2021-22 school year. The Education Fund was reduced by one percent to accommodate a reduction in state funding for the year, as revenue continues to be down statewide due to emergency purchases related to COVID-19.

• Reviewed the current Capitol Projects plan. “No huge projects” were discussed as administrators focus on the health and safety of students during the pandemic, Foster said. Annual allotments toward asphault work, filling cracks, seal coating and line painting were listed. A new order of additional Google Chromebooks was also discussed.

• Approved the hire of multiple employees, some retroactively as the school year has begun. A full directory of Southeast Fountain staff can be found at www.sefschools.org/staff-directory-fchs.html.

• Southeast Fountain Elementary Principal Kelli Morgan and Fountain Central Jr.-Sr. High School Principal Ashley Hammond reported a successful return to school with no issues related to COVID-19.

The next regularly board meeting is set for 6 p.m. Sept. 10 at the administration offices,  744 U.S. 136 in Veedersburg.

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